Ah, Irene. And who said idealism was the flip side of cynicism Janus-like? When you do perfect parenting, do give us the secrets. We're all a flutter to know. For what it's not worth, I agree re. people no longer living naturally, the way we were meant to. But given today's societal givens, it seems moot to argue the point. Julie Krueger worshipping the sun-god in a swimsuit (wanna talk melanoma?) ========Original Message======== Subj: [lit-ideas] Re: Life or death Date: 4/4/2007 11:25:39 P.M. Central Daylight Time From: _aamago@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx (mailto:aamago@xxxxxxxxxxxxx) To: _lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx (mailto:lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx) Sent on: -----Original Message----- From: Carol Kirschenbaum Sent: Apr 4, 2007 3:20 PM To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Life or death Irene wrote: "Children do need more care, with immunizations, ear infections and the like, but there's little excuse for most adults. " ck: Huh? Are you serious? "Little excuse" for what--for getting sick? A.A. Define sick. Colds, i.e., viruses, are not treatable by modern medicine. Antibiotics treat what they treat. What you're referring to as sick are the degenerative diseases, i.e., diabetes, diverticulosis/diverticulitis, heart disease, cancer, stuff like that. Those are virtually completely preventable. There is no reason for anyone in this country to have a degenerative disease, yet degenerative diseases are rampant. C.K. The administration ("conservatives") would have us all believe that everyone would be fine in this country if we only ate less and exercised. A.A. I haven't heard them say this, but if they're saying it, they're right. If we ate a lot less and a lot different, i.e., ate the way the body was designed by evolution to eat, and exercised a lot more, things would be very different. Even a 5% reduction in weight results in something like a 50% reduction in the amount of insulin needed. The body is a machine. Treat your machines right and they'll treat you right. If you put diesel into a gasoline car, it wouldn't be long before it stalled on you. Who would you blame? That's exactly what's happening to people. C.K. Obesity as the new Black Death, A.A. Absolutely. Obese people even survive serious car accidents in smaller numbers than normal weight people. C.K. the omnipotent cause that's All Our Fault. A.A. And whose fault is being overfed and undernourished? You want the government to exercise for you? C.K. This media campaign (which you've bought into, apparently) A.A. I don't know what you're referring to. Health care is basically ignored by the administration. I've never seen anything for or against healthcare in my reading. C.K. is actually shoddy excuse for a genuine health care system. A.A. Actually, you've got it backwards. A genuine health care system is a shoddy excuse for keeping the body running properly. We need healthcare for what healthcare is designed to do, i.e., set bones, give antibiotics. It's not going to make up for bad genes and in no way will it even come close to making up for properly maintaining the body through proper nutrition and exercise. C.K. Not that obesity is good, or that it doesn't cause some problems, but low weight does not obviate the need for medical treatment, of course. A.A. Obesity is, quite literally, death. There is no medical care that can undo it for longer than temporarily. Caloric restriction and low weight do in fact often, if not usually, obviate the need for medical treatment. They actually keeps the body biologically younger than more generously nourished counterparts. Exercise too. Use or lose it. C.K. I referred to my asthmatic friend in her 50s specifically because she represented, if you will, a classic case. A.A. Asthma is a strange disease. Your friend needs to figure out what's triggering her. Often asthma is a way of somatizing emotional problems. Our bodies speak to us if we'd listen. Is you friend feeling smothered by something in her life? A crummy job, a bad relationship? Does she have a lot of unexpressed anger (which she's not aware of, most likely from childhood) that her body is telling to deal with? Or does she have allergies? There's also a lot of evidence that Vitamin D (in much, much higher quantities than is currently recommended) is a powerful anti-inflammatory. Asthma is caused by inflamed airways. Vitamin D (misnamed a vitamin, it's actually a hormone produced in the skin by the sun) is found in every cell of the body. We evolved in the sun but spend our time in offices, which is to say we're very deficient in it. Vitamin D is associated with reduced rates of absolutely everything, from osteoporosis to multiple sclerosis (unknown on the equator), to Parkinson's disease to allergies to you name it. Modern people are very undersupplied with this critical substance. In fact, they think now that the reason that isolating people with tuberculosis in sanatoriums worked is because they would sit them in the sun and the Vitamin D that was produced allowed the immune system to function properly and heal the person. The point is, just medicating asthma without finding out the cause is good for the pharmaceutical industry, not for your friend in the long run. Most likely she'll have to do her own sleuthing. C.K. She worked throughout her hard life, paycheck to paycheck. A host of rotten diseases tend to hit people in their 40s and 50s, often due to medical neglect. (Caught early, many diseases are easily managed, medically and by lifestyle. Later, they're costly and disabling, like severe asthma.) A.A. Again, it isn't medical neglect, it's a lifetime of dietary neglect, emotional neglect, etc. We don't live the way we were designed to live, not even close, so we get sick. C.K. Irene scoffed at gaining a mere six years of life from advanced medical treatment. A.A. He spent six years in cancer treatment, surgery, chemo, radiation and it spread anyway. Not my idea of quality of life. C.K. What about the increased quality of life before death, from years of regular medical care? A.A. Again, not from medical care, never from medical care, but from self care. C.K. What about treatment that allows someone to work--mental illnesses come to mind--versus no treatment, that lands a poor soul on the street, babbling to herself? A.A. Now we agree. We need to put tremendous emphasis on mental health. The mind is expressed in the body. And we need to teach parenting so that mental issues aren't built into the picture from the beginning. C.K. And what about this "basic screening" for colon cancer and breast cancer, among others? Catch a tumor early and it's not necessarily a cancer. But uninsured, working poor people wait until they can afford the treatment (which is EXPENSIVE--meaning, a huge chunk of what's left when you work at Wal-Mart). A.A. Well, that's where Dr. Hadler will take issue with you. Tumors caught early are easier to treat. The problem is that all the quality studies show (according to Dr. Hadler) that testing doesn't extend life by any appreciable amount. C.K. ... No dental care. A.A. That does need to be provided. C.K. Free meds from those philanthropic pharmaceutical companies, for a while. A.A. Oxymoron, philanthropic pharmaceutical companies. They hook even children on all sorts of drugs. They're out for themselves. Plus reliance on pills is a distraction away from the real issues of, among other things, proper nutrition and exercise. C.K. It doesn't take a genius to figure out how the lack of health care factors into a deep spiral of joblessness and poverty. Take teeth! The sole dental care for Medicaid patients (in this region) is teeth pulling. No fixing, just pulling. Same for the uninsured--and here's where age tends to be a tipping factor. Ever notice the toothlessness among homeless people, for instance? Before those teeth were pulled, somehow, there was pain. Maybe abscesses (commonly leads to sepsis and death, unbeknownst to most of us). So that person with rather unsightly teeth has been ill. Now he's got no front teeth. (If the back teeth are gone, he's probably got serious digestive problems.) A person with bad or missing teeth is less attractive than others, and less likely to land that job offering benefits. Less health care when needed. Less and less time spent working vs suffering in pain, as stamina decreases. Get the picture? A.A. I said dental needs to be provided, and emotional health. Jobs too are a huge problem. We could generate wonderful jobs just cleaning up the environment. Instead we concentrate on McMonster houses and other nonsense. Our values are completely screwed up. Regarding mental health services, I daresay that 98% of everybody will say there's nothing wrong with them emotionally and they won't go for treatment even if it was available. I think rather than get so excited about healthcare, we need to make fundamental structural changes in eliminating fast food as we know it, subsidizing fruits and vegetables instead of corn fed meat products, giving incentives for exercise and not smoking, teaching parenting, even licensing people before they take up raising little humans. Then not only will healthcare become a minor issue but the prisons would empty out, gangs would no longer be necessary and on and on. But the way things are now, that's pie in the sky, pure fantasy. Just a fun fact. The USDA spends something like five million dollars a year (don't hold me to that number, but it's very low) advertising its 5 a Day for Health, while the food industry spends in the billions advertising all the greasy, sleezy stuff that they sell that people think is delicious. About 10-15 years ago restaurant meals were in the range of 1,000 calories and health authorities were warning that it was too much; today restaurant meals are in the range of 2,000 calories and up, none of it in the form of vegetables. Home portion sizes follow suit. There's no amount of healthcare that will offset that. ------------------------------------------------------------------ To change your Lit-Ideas settings (subscribe/unsub, vacation on/off, digest on/off), visit www.andreas.com/faq-lit-ideas.html ************************************** See what's free at http://www.aol.com.